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Foods & recipes that fight cancer

Diana De Cicco is a food editor and writer based in New York City. She has a master's degree from New York University in Food Studies. Her passions are eating, traveling, and eating while traveling.

Eat for your health

We all know that eating plenty of fruits and vegetables is good for your health, but we may not know exactly what to eat to help prevent cancer.
Woman in pink with fruit

There are tons of fruits and vegetables with cancer-preventing qualities so eat up. Just remember to continue to take care of yourself in other ways because healthy eating is only part of the equation.

Best cancer-preventing fruits

Consuming a big variety of fruits is always a good thing. However, some fruits have more cancer-fighting chemicals than others. Here is a list of some of the best fruits to consume on a daily basis to help prevent cancer; just remember to mix them up!

  • Apples, pears
  • Apricots, plums
  • Blackberries, raspberries, strawberries, blueberries
  • Red grapes
  • Grapefruits, lemons, oranges
  • Papayas, mangos, bananas

You should eat a variety of these, and eat as many of them raw as possible. If you are cooking with fruits, don't cook them thoroughly because the cancer-fighting chemicals will be reduced.

Best cancer-preventing vegetables

As with fruits, eating a variety of colorful vegetables is essential to a healthy lifestyle. Dark green vegetables have high cancer-fighting abilities as do vegetables high in fiber. Here are some of the best ones: artichokes, avocados, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, corn, dark leafy greens, garlic, jalapeño peppers, kale, mushrooms, onions, peas, peppers, potatoes, spinach, squash, tomatoes.

Eating raw vegetables is probably one of the best ways to enjoy them and to reap the most benefits, but if you are going to cook them, steam them lightly or saute them with olive oil instead of vegetable oil. You only want to cook vegetables until they are al dente in order to keep most of their nutrients intact. And remember, adding herbs to sauteed vegetables will give them extra flavor, and some herbs (like rosemary and ginger) also have cancer fighting abilities.

Up next: Cancer-fighting recipes >>

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